Characters in British detective novels like to order a mysterious cocktail called a Gin and It, says Marsha. So what’s the “it”? Simply Italian vermouth, otherwise known as sweet vermouth, says pclarke. A 1948 recipe calls for three parts gin to one part sweet vermouth, but Alcachofa would put the proportions at 50-50, and JMF traces the drink back to its gentle 19th-century origins, where it’s four parts sweet vermouth to one part gin.

Any way you mix it, be sure to add a dash of orange bitters.

Board Links: What is ‘it’ in ‘gin and it’?

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